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Employees are one of the most valuable assets a business has. A business’ human resources (HR) department can make or break the experience employees have while working there. For an HR department to be truly effective, it needs to be properly prepared to handle anything, especially in the case of certain events.

Workplace Harassment

Workplace harassment negatively impacts every level of a business. While most people tend to think of workplace harassment as being situations where males are harassing females, that’s far from being the only instance. Harassment happens at all levels and perpetrators can be found in any demographic. Because of the negative effects of workplace harassment, it’s important to have policies in place that dictate what action should be taken on the back of that. Take the time to hear out all sides, treat all parties with respect, and avoid anything that could be construed as retaliation as much as possible.

Employee Injuries

People don’t typically show up to work planning to get injured, but even the best risk management policies can’t prevent all injuries. At some point, the HR department is probably going to have to deal with a workplace injury of some sort. Employee injuries tend to be highly time-sensitive matters, so be prepared for such an event. Make sure you carry workers’ compensation insurance and are familiar with the claims process. Not only does it protect your employees, but workers’ comp is mandatory in most states. Not having worker’s comp can result in a big hit to your company from the government.

Performance Reviews

For employees to reach their potential as assets to a business, it’s important to measure performance. Performance reviews can be a valuable tool for measuring performance, but it works best when proper preparations have been done ahead of time. HR personnel should be heavily involved in designing the review and should act as mediators during the actual review. Managers sometimes make mistakes when doing reviews, and HR personnel can help them avoid doing so. It’s also HR’s job to make sure the review is impartial and that any actions taken as a result of the performance review are appropriate based on the results of the review.

An HR department that is prepared for certain events is better able to respond to them and even play a preemptive role in managing the negative ones. Workplace harassment, employee injuries, and performance reviews all can significantly impact a business. The HR department plays an integral role in how those events play out. For best results, such preparations should be regularly reviewed and adjusted as needed.

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